Not that I was one of those who opted for it, but is there any word on how the change to the annual pass structure will affect those who bought Lifetime Passes? While I realize that it's probably a significantly small population, I think it's probably an important question.
On Thursday I along with Robb had the opportunity to attend a special media event for the unveiling of a brand new attraction at Legoland Florida. The Fresh from Florida Greenhouse is an updated attraction that has been a part of Cypress Gardens' history since before the park became an "adventure park." While not a part of the park's opening projects, General Manager Adrian Jones made it clear that the park's ability to greatly exceed their attendance and revenue targets has allowed for smaller projects like this one to move forward. He also made it clear that there's much more in store for Legoland Florida, including the upcoming opening of the Legoland Water Park as well as the soon-to-begin construction on the Legoland Hotel, which he said would likely be the largest hotel in the chain thus far, and would include additional gardens and an expansion of the historic Cypress Gardens mansion still found on the property today.
The Fresh from Florida Greenhouse itself is an awesome little exhibit with a great mix of education, interactivity and Lego models embedded in a well designed environment. It truly was a great blend of all that Legoland does so well.
Having only been to Legoland Florida during its some of the construction tours, it was quite a difference to see the park open to the public. The place was much busier than I expected, and we agreed that the crowd that the park saw on that day was more than we ever saw at Cypress Gardens Adventure Park. It is truly clear to see a new passion for the park with Legoland and its wonderful staff, especially Adrian Jones. I was truly shocked at the level of detail found in the parks (specifically in Miniland), especially because I had never been to another Legoland location before this. The landscape and design of the park (in part thanks to what was already developed for Cypress Gardens over the years) blends beautifully into the fabric of what Legoland has laid out, and if you had now clue that Cypress Gardens existed first, you'd swear that Legoland must have been around for quite some time.
Another interesting note... The park has been receiving minor additions and operational updates since its opening, including new covered awnings for queues and open areas needing shade. They've also opened several smaller attractions in the Imagination Zone plus one more dining venue! To see some of the earlier visits to the park and compare to how things are, check out our Media Preview Report as well as our Park Opening Report.
Considering we went on an accelerated tour of the park due to time constraints, I'm eager to get back to the park and see what a full day there could include. There are several attractions I did not get to experience (or experience enough) and I think I could probably spend another couple of hours just taking in all of the detail at Miniland. Plus, with the Legoland Water Park, Legoland Hotel and continued efforts to bring old Cypress Gardens facilities back into Legoland, I truly look forward to returning to this park as soon as possible. I honestly cannot get over how impressed I was with this park!
Now, its time for an Adam-sized photo report!
Welcome to Legoland Florida!
The entrance to the park is very well designed and looks nothing like its predecessor.
There's an organic reason we're here today...
Theme Park Review was invited to attend the media preview of the Fresh from Florida Greenhouse!
This greenhouse has actually been at Cypress Gardens since before it was the Adventure Park. Known as the Wings of Wonder Greenhouse, it included live butterflies within its glass walls.
Located right next to the park's historic mansion, the greenhouse is near the main entrance plaza of the park.
Fresh from Florida sponsors the revived attraction in the hopes of promoting local agricultural markets and the education of agriculture at a young age.
Park General Manager Adrian Jones kicked off the opening ceremony with some words on the exponential success of Legoland Florida since its opening. Notice the Lego mini-figure on his name badge...
Adrian Jones welcomes Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam to the podium, giving him the mini-figure from his badge. The mini-figure was a Lego version of Adam Putnam!
He seemed pretty excited to be presented himself in Lego form.
Looks very nice!
Time to plant the last tree near the Greenhouse to mark the grand opening of the attraction!
Shovel, shovel, shovel!
And with that, the opening ceremonies concluded.
He's my buddy! He's your buddy! He's Buddy Lego!
We all know who is in charge here!
Tiny attention to detail like this took me by surprise.
Here we go!
They've got this awesome little game where you guess the seed and press a button based on your guess...
Based on your answer, a mouse will pop up to let you know if you answered correctly or not. Very cute!
These mice can be found throughout the greenhouse.
Lego mini displays are integrated into the greenhouse landscape.
The venue itself is pretty large and features air conditioning, which makes for a very relaxing experience to be taken at a leisurely pace.
General Manager Adrian Jones took the time to talk to us about the new Greenhouse and about future plans for the park.
He's definitely passionate about Legoland Florida, and it was a great pleasure to have the chance to hear from him regarding the many things in store for this fantastic park!
I think this illustrates the beauty of the greenhouse pretty well!
The little details...
Some of the displays feature interactive elements like this one!
These Lego oranges look good enough to eat!
They have a cow-milking simulator here!
There's a section of the exhibit based on beeswax and honey.
"Not the bees! AHHHHHHH Ahgarbulagabah my eyes! my eyes!"
Name the reference!
The bees even light up!
There's a wishing well here for donations to Merlin's Magic Wand.
A tribute to the history of the greenhouse from when it was open at Cypress Gardens.
Fresh fruit anyone?
Well there was plenty of it at the exit!
They even gave us some delicious samples that made us do this...
I covet fresh fruit on wafers... Tis a weakness of mine.
The I-Zone Panini dining location opened recently at the park...
A nice and simple location...
The Hero Factory also recently opened in the Imagination Zone.
It seemed pretty busy during our visit.
The Imagination Zone also features the WB Games Zone!, as WB Games now publishes all Lego-branded games.
There are game stations for guests to try out different Lego games on different consoles.
Robb shared with me the story of the Chainsaw Bunny... Do you know why he's significant?
Lego Batman and Robin from the video game are featured in the park currently.
We see you Chainsaw Bunny!
Pirates Cove hosts a water ski show, which we covered previously before the park opened.
Time to act all good and historically proper!
Legoland Florida has done an incredible job integrating the Cypress Gardens heritage into their new park.
Even the logo is a throwback to the old park!
She's awfully purty!
Time to visit the famous Banyan Tree!
This'll be my Hannukah card picture!
What have we here?
It's the Legoland Water Park progress!
The thrill slide tower is getting a new cover and paint job!
"Going up the stairs and going down the stairs, and going up the sideways stairs!"
Good and proper!
A look back...
We promised Renee we'd include a trash can photo... Plus they serve Pepsi.
There's some amazing landscapes at Legoland Florida!
The Lego Friends Shop opened at the park recently.
The park's carousel has been updated to include Lego horses.
And now they have Lego jesters!
My favorite photo op!
Time to check out The Dragon!
It's all for the love of Larry!
The former Okeechobee Rampage underwent a significant upgrade to become The Dragon. The track was extended at the beginning and end of the attraction to allow for new show scenes and a slightly longer ride experience.
The ride has an additional train but was only running one during our visit...
And here it is!
There's a rat cut in half.
His tail even busts through the wall.
Change the scheme, Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls if you would be so kind!
Awesome TR... I was one of the people who initially believed this park would not do particularly well because of the location, but I am happy to be wrong on that account. Also the bees reference is from one of the best(in a bad way) movies ever... THE WICKERMAN(Nicolas Cage version... cause the original is awesome)
Cyrbuzz wrote:Did you notice in the picture showing other park locations has 5 other Legoland parks listed in the U.S. ? They are planning some serious expansions to their park chain from the looks of it.
Those other locations in the US are Discovery Centers and Sea Life exhibits, not theme parks.
As usual, my analysis is free of charge! Original enough to not steal someone else's quote as a signature
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